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Hypothetical: "Contending" for the faith

Discussion in 'Christian Apologetics' started by Ironhold, Aug 22, 2019.

  1. Ironhold

    Ironhold Member

    +1,183
    Mormon
    Single
    Hypothetical situation:

    Your congregation has a guest speaker one Sunday. This person goes on an extended bit about how you need to "contend" for the faith against the people they consider to be "non-believers" and others who they feel seek to challenge Christ; basically, they end up arguing a "with us or against us" mentality.

    Monday afternoon. You're watching the evening news and discover that the lead story is about a fight that broke out at a local elementary school. One of the kids who was in your congregation yesterday heard the guest speaker, found a thesaurus that said "contend" and "fight" were synonyms, and while at school today started smacking around several classmates.

    This came to a screeching halt when one classmate administered the "laying on of hands", and when the parents of all involved children were called to the school, it ended up being a repeat performance as the father of the kid who started it all took a swing at the father of the kid who ended it and instantly came to regret it.

    Social media is now blowing up over this, and the congregation you go to is regarded as preaching hatred.

    How do you respond?
     
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  2. Halbhh

    Halbhh Everything You say is Life to me Supporter

    +4,582
    United States
    Christian
    Married
    Well, we have to guess at a couple of things here, but it seems as if the young kids heard the sermon (they were not in Sunday School), but had not learned a basic and key lesson, or did not realize just what the words mean -- didn't get that "in everything" really means in everything:

    Matthew 7:12 In everything, then, do to others as you would have them do to you. For this is the essence of the Law and the Prophets.

    So, the pastor and/or the church isn't really doing their work to teach the children well enough. Now of course, something could just slip through the cracks, where most of the kids knew better, and this one was just a visitor or such, and then it's simply unfortunate, but sin and stumbling does happen, and so you try to simply teach needed lessons, including for instance the lesson of 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.-- that we should confess our more significant sins sincerely to our Father, so that we will be cleansed of them. So, overall, it's about teaching the scripture well, and sometimes the lessons have to be basic, because the basics matter a great deal. Too many times people learn something more complex, but have missed a key basic thing. We need those key basic teachings from Him, and they are so sweet!
     
  3. cloudyday2

    cloudyday2 Generic Theist Supporter

    +1,775
    United States
    Agnostic
    Single
    It seems to me that any teaching can be misunderstood or misapplied, and that doesn't discredit the teaching. We should judge a teaching based on its effects when understood and applied correctly a large number of times in varied circumstances.
     
  4. Tinker Grey

    Tinker Grey Wanderer Supporter

    +1,810
    Atheist
    However, it might discredit the clarity of the teacher.
     
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  5. gaara4158

    gaara4158 I prefer you trust your reason.

    +1,372
    United States
    Humanist
    Married
    US-Democrat
    I swear there’s a Moral Orel episode about this. It’s right on theme.
     
  6. Moral Orel

    Moral Orel Proud Citizen of Moralton Supporter

    +1,810
    United States
    Agnostic
    Married
    Well, at first I learned in church that I should turn the other cheek, so I was letting the school bully pummel me everyday. But my mother was upset that she had to clean the blood out of my clothes, and my father didn't want to spend the extra money on detergent, so he informed me that I could spread the Gospel by giving other people the opportunity to turn the other cheek too by beating them up! So I went around town beating up everyone including my parents.

    Season 2 Episode 13
     
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